This week Bill Johnson, senior pastor of Bethel Church, highlighted two verses from the Bible to me, through which God spoke deeply to me as I was checking that verse in other versions. I was so amazed to see, that every translation I checked said something else, using other words. I looked it up in the Jewish Bible and I saw two Jewish words which I haven't heard till then, I have to recognize that I'm not familiar with the Jewish language although I wish to learn it. Then I was led to search about it on the internet and I instantly found the answers to my questions. Oh my goodness, how awesome it is to fall into the hands of God and be taught of His amazing love and purpose for all the earth.
Here are the two verses (Proverbs 3:3-4) in various Bible Versions:
Never let loyalty and kindness leave you!
Tie them around your neck as a reminder.
Write them deep within your heart.
Then you will find favor with both God and people,
and you will earn a good reputation. (NLT)
Let not kindness and truth forsake thee:
Bind them about thy neck;
Write them upon the tablet of thy heart:
So shalt thou find favor and good understanding
In the sight of God and man. (ASV)
Let love and faithfulness never leave you;
bind them around your neck,
write them on the tablet of your heart.
Then you will win favor and a good name
in the sight of God and man. (NIV)
Don’t ever let love and loyalty leave you.
Tie them around your neck, and write them on your heart.
Then God will be pleased and think well of you and so will everyone else. (ERV)
Let not mercy and kindness [shutting out all hatred and selfishness] and truth [shutting out all deliberate hypocrisy or falsehood] forsake you; bind them about your neck, write them upon the tablet of your heart.
So shall you find favor, good understanding, and high esteem in the sight [or judgment] of God and man. (AMP)
Here's the Jewish version:
Let not chesed and emes forsake thee; bind them about thy neck;
write them upon the luach (tablet) of thine lev;
So shalt thou find chen and seichel tov in the eyes of Elohim and adam. (OJB)
So I took these two words 'chesed and emes' and searched for their meaning. This is what I found:
We often hear chesed translated as “loving kindness” but it is so much more than this. It’s so much deeper. It’s what we do for people without payback or cause. It’s being proactive towards another person for no other reason than there is a need to fill. It means being good- hearted and having a good attitude, treating people with respect, compassion and sensitivity. It means identifying a need, pain or trouble in another person and doing all that you can. And influencing others to do the same. It means pursuing opportunities to do all the chesed that our circumstances and resources including our talents and our kochos allow. Really giving till it hurts. And it means to love chesed, and to do it with love.
That's why all the versions used for 'chesed and emes' something else, because it has deep meanings. Then I read further and I found this:
And what is the ultimate act of chesed? We know it as a chesed shel emes. That is the term used to describe the task of preparing a body for burial (taharos). There is no greater chesed than this because there is absolutely no payback. And in most cases, no one will ever know who did this chesed for whom. It’s kept very quiet. [Source: Emes Ve-Emunah: What is chesed?]
You see? Everything speaks about Jesus, who died and gave everything up for us, and how we should also be like Him: die to ourselves and let Him live in us. In Jesus there is everything: loyalty, kindness, truth, love, faithfulness, mercy, good- heartedness, good attitudes, treating people with respect, compassion, sensitivity, etc. He is all in one. How grateful should we be that we received this gift free of charge. It amazes me each and every time I think about it.